Everything Beautiful Began After [NOOK Book]

Overview

Rebecca is young, lost, and beautiful. A gifted artist, she seeks solace and inspiration in the Mediterranean heat of Athens—trying to understand who she is and how she can love without fear.

George has come to Athens to learn ancient languages after growing up in New England boarding schools and Ivy League colleges. He has no close relationships with anyone and spends his days hunched over books or wandering the city in a drunken stupor.

Henry...

See more details below
Everything Beautiful Began After

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$10.99
BN.com price

Overview

Rebecca is young, lost, and beautiful. A gifted artist, she seeks solace and inspiration in the Mediterranean heat of Athens—trying to understand who she is and how she can love without fear.

George has come to Athens to learn ancient languages after growing up in New England boarding schools and Ivy League colleges. He has no close relationships with anyone and spends his days hunched over books or wandering the city in a drunken stupor.

Henry is in Athens to dig. An accomplished young archaeologist, he devotedly uncovers the city’s past as a way to escape his own, which holds a secret that not even his doting parents can talk about.

...And then, with a series of chance meetings, Rebecca, George, and Henry are suddenly in flight, their lives brighter and clearer than ever, as they fall headlong into a summer that will forever define them in the decades to come.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Van Booy, a Frank O'Connor International Short Story award winner (for Love Begins in Winter), offers a tender, earnest first novel, in which flight attendant Rebecca Baptiste moves to Athens, Greece, where she meets George Cavendish, an American with a passion for languages and drinking. Their romance blooms quickly, but when Rebecca falls for a Welsh archeologist named Henry, George drinks so much that he stumbles in front of a car—Henry's car. Without knowing what they share, Henry tends to George's injuries, cementing an immediate and long-lasting alliance. But some time later, George sees Rebecca with Henry, and the shock of recognition leaves these three sensitive souls shaken, snapping George into sobriety and sending Henry adrift. When Henry finally returns two years later, after a devastating earthquake, both he and Athens have changed dramatically. Finally, his discovery of a journal that may have belonged to Rebecca makes him wonder how well he knew her. The rhythms of Henry's tender, damaged heart propel the narrative, and Van Booy wisely resists romanticizing torment, instead suggesting that grief—tied as it is to fate and faith—can give way to promise. (July)
Daily Candy
“[T]he exquisite prose and heartbreaking (but never hopeless) emotional honesty make it a worthy read.”
San Francisco Examiner
“Van Booy’s writing rings with the proverbial pithiness of Oscar Wilde, the elegance of F. Scott Fitzgerald, the clarity of Graham Greene and the wit of Evelyn Waugh, conjuring a strong voice full of poetic, timeless grace of which much of the contemporary literary scene is starved.”
Daily Mail (London)
“There is...an integrity to [Van Booy’s] vision and a haunting element in his portrait of friendship and, ultimately, resolution.”
Metro (London)
“Vivid and meticulous...the floweriness of his prose is skillfully balanced by his short, precise sentences. Intriguing.”
Portland Press Herald
“Van Booy’s writing seduces from the first page….He is a hugely gifted writer. More vitally, he has something to say.”
Wall Street Journal
“A swift and engaging story...”
Passport
“Beautifully written, touchingly told, Van Booy radiates pain, fears, love and freedom on every page of this book.”
Publishers Weekly
“A tender, earnest first novel....Van Booy wisely resists romanticizing torment, instead suggesting that grief -- tied as it is to fate and faith -- can give awy to promise.”
Open Letters Monthly
“How lovely to encounter a grownup romantic in Simon Van Booy….[He] is a lovely writer, and Everything Beautiful Began After is a kind book.”
Irish Times
“Atmospheric and anchored in its place. A book that is timeless but not rootless. Everything Beautiful Began After is highly sophisticated and absolutely sincere.”
Austin Ratner
“His prose is music, and his characters are warmhearted, gentle, bemused, philosophical beings….It’s as if Shakespeare’s Sonnet No. 30 has unfolded into a full-blown novel.”
Andre Dubus III
“If F. Scott Fitzgerald and Marguerite Duras had had a son, he would be Simon Van Booy; this is a truly special writer who does things with abstract language that is so evocative and original your breath literally catches in your chest. This is a novel you simply must read!”
Robert Olen Butler
“Already a new-generation master of the short story, Simon Van Booy has now emerged as a newly minted master of the novel as well….Van Booy is a writer whose work I will forever eagerly read.”
Emma Straub
Everything Beautiful Began After both creates and satisfies a feeling of wanderlust. Van Booy’s confident prose carries the reader over oceans and back again, into archaeological digs and airport hotels, and the romance at the center of the book stays vivid long after the story is through.”
Library Journal
Crimson-haired Rebecca has left behind a job at Air France and a life that's stuttering out like a candle to settle in Athens and work at becoming a painter, drawing on the memory of the mother who abandoned her and her sister as children. Socially maladapted, relentlessly soused, but indisputably brilliant—he breezed through college early after lonely years at a New England boarding school—George is in Athens to perfect his grasp of ancient languages. Rebecca falls carelessly into a brief affair with George but takes up passionately with Henry, a charismatic if troubled archaeologist in Athens on a dig. Then Henry unknowingly befriends George, and together they end up working together on the dig. But this is no idyll; the dark backstories crafted for each character by first novelist Van Booy (Love Begins in Winter) presage a crushing tragedy that changes the landscape of their lives forever. VERDICT Readers who like to zip through the pages might find this precious or overextended, but those with a little patience will be taken in by the carefully etched stories and lyrically precise and inventive language. A lovely book for sophisticated readers.—Barbara Hoffert, Library Journal
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062079497
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 7/5/2011
  • Sold by: HARPERCOLLINS
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 30,545
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Simon Van Booy is the author of two novels and two collections of short stories, including The Secret Lives of People in Love and Love Begins in Winter, which won the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award. He is the editor of three philosophy books and has written for The New York Times, The Guardian, NPR, and the BBC. His work has been translated into fourteen languages. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and daughter.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 12 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(5)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

(4)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 12 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 25, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Everything Beautiful Began After

    This is one of those books where you either love it or hate it; understand it or confused by it. It's a story about three lost people who meet in Athens one summer; a summer that molds their future. Although, beautifully written, I could not get into it as I become confused and then disinterested. But I do say give it a try since Simon Van Booy is a gifted author.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 24, 2014

     Everything Beautiful Began After" was probably one of the

     Everything Beautiful Began After" was probably one of the most interestingly written books I have ever read. I chose this book from the Bookbub website mostly because I thought it had an interesting title. The title was indicative of the writing style.




    Van Booy uses wonderful imagery and clever construction of his story of three lonely people who meet on the streets of Athens, Greece and create enduring love and friendship. The POV changes in the story, while somewhat jarring, are used to help create tension and emotion. They were used in a manner I had never seen before.




    But while I liked and appreciated the style of the book, when you strip away the beautiful imagery and words, you are left with just a shell of a story. By the end, I felt let down that more wasn't accomplished in 300 pages. Essentially the bulk of the story happens in the first third of the book - leaving the rest feeling void and repetitious. Once you have read the story, you realize that Van Booy may have intended that reaction all along. But to me, that intention flies in the face of the title. If what was beautiful truly began after, then Van Booy didn't spend enough time on the beautiful and I was left feeling a bit cheated.




    If you love language and beautiful metaphors, and you are looking only for that, you would love this book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 13, 2012

    Picked this book up while traveling in paris. Couldn't put it do

    Picked this book up while traveling in paris. Couldn't put it down! The story was beautiful!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 15, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Not bad at all

    A great read for sure

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted July 15, 2011

    Beautiful, Poetic Language...

    I fell in love with Everything Beautiful Began After after having just read the Prologue and the rest of the book did not disappoint. Simon Van Booy's beautiful poetic language is stunning and his descriptions require the reader to pause and take a deep breath to take them in. The characters are so well developed that one cannot help but love and care deeply for them. It is fascinating to watch as they argue over the existence of fate while we quietly witness fate take its toll on each of them. There is a sense of unpredictability, an unknowing that keeps the pages turning. Van Booy's use of different points of view also adds depth to this novel. It was a genius way to create various space and distance between the reader and the characters. The cover and deckle-edged paper provides the perfect package for such a beautiful and tragic love story. The ending felt a bit rushed to me and things seemed to be tied up a little too perfectly in the end. This may be that I just didn't want the book to end. I was invested in these characters and wanted to spend more time with them. However, at over 400 pages, I understand Van Booy had to end the book at some point. Maybe he will write a sequel! If you want to be swept away into a beautiful love story with writing that literally takes you there as a silent witness to the unfolding lives of the characters, this book is definitely for you. I wanted to continue inside the world Van Booy created with this novel so much that I actually got up in the middle of the night, unable to sleep because I couldn't stop thinking about it, and continued reading until it was finished.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted July 14, 2011

    A lovely, beautifully written book.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 13, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 6, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 28, 2014

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 8, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 13, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 12 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)